6 Tips for Being Supportive of Your Kid Without Being a Stage MomStacie Haight Connerty
Most of us have seen the shows and the moms. You know the ones. Those over-the-top moms on Toddlers and Tiaras in the back, lip syncing the entire routine complete with dance moves and all?
My children are in a lot of activities so they end up on a lot of stages. Some of the parents are great and really supportive. And others … well others have actually elbowed kids out of the way just to get a good picture of their own child.
1. Show up on time
If the recital starts at 5:00 pm, out of respect for the other parents and kids, SHOW UP ON TIME. In fact, go five minutes early. You never know when a bathroom break will be needed or a wardrobe malfunction will happen.
My youngest daughter had a ballet recital last weekend and it was held up by 30 minutes for a father who was late. His daughter was upset and crying, which disrupted the entire class plus put off the start of the recital. The dad showed up with McDonald’s and earned an angry glare from many parents.
2. Follow Directions
If your child should be in a white T-shirt and jeans, dress him or her in that. My daughter was in a school play last week and I was amazed at how many children were not dressed in the requested outfits. They stood out and really drew attention away from the play. If you don’t own it, borrow it.
3. Don’t Take it Personally
My three children never get chosen for the leads in the school plays. They don’t take it personally and so I try not to as well. My daughter recently tried out for a solider in her school play and when she didn’t get the part, she said, “They usually give those parts to boys anyway but I sure would have made a great soldier.” That was the last time she mentioned it.
There will be rejection in every child’s life. For me, the key with my children is just moving. They don’t get upset by rejection because they always know something better will come along.
4. Stay Out of the Way When You Need To and Jump In When You Are Asked To
Same ballet recital last weekend and two parents were each working a camera trying to get their child on film. One had a video camera and the other had a point-and-shoot. Problem is that no one was watching their younger kids. These kids turned off the music, almost caused the teacher to trip & fall off the stage and ran onto the stage several times. Finally, another parent asked if they needed help watching their kids. They got the message.
For my daughter’s school play a few weeks ago, they were having some sound issues and asked if anyone could help. One of the dad’s jumped right up to lend assistance.
5. Let Your Child Follow Their Dreams
Last year, my two girls wanted to be ballerinas so we signed them up for ballet classes. My older child hasn’t enjoyed it as much as I hoped she would so she is going to try something else. I really want her to still take ballet but since that isn’t what she wants, she is going to try soccer. I had to step and let her make the decision rather than have her follow my dream.
6. Let Your Child Shine
There is no need to dance in the back or go through the entire routine for your child. Give them a chance to do what they can. The only thing I ever tell my child to do while she is on stage is to smile. That’s it. I know my kids will make mistakes. I expect it. But what I also know is that will learn something from every single experience.
Read more from Stacie on The Divine Miss Mommy.
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